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A Mechanistic Framework for Integrating Chemical Structure and High-Throughput Screening Results to Improve Toxicity Predictions

Nelms, M, Mellor, C, Enoch, SJ, Judson, R, Patlewicz, G, Richard, A, Madden, JC, Cronin, MTD and Edwards, S (2018) A Mechanistic Framework for Integrating Chemical Structure and High-Throughput Screening Results to Improve Toxicity Predictions. Computational Toxicology, 8. ISSN 2468-1113

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Adverse Outcome Pathways (AOPs) establish a connection between a molecular initiating event (MIE) and an adverse outcome. Detailed understanding of the MIE provides the ideal data for determining chemical properties required to elicit the MIE. This study utilized high-throughput screening data from the ToxCast program, coupled with chemical structural information, to generate chemical clusters using three similarity methods pertaining to nine MIEs within an AOP network for hepatic steatosis. Three case studies demonstrate the utility of the mechanistic information held by the MIE for integrating biological and chemical data. Evaluation of the chemical clusters activating the glucocorticoid receptor identified activity differences in chemicals within a cluster. Comparison of the estrogen receptor results with previous work showed that bioactivity data and structural alerts can be combined to improve predictions in a customizable way where bioactivity data are limited. The aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) highlighted that while structural data can be used to offset limited data for new screening efforts, not all ToxCast targets have sufficient data to define robust chemical clusters. In this context, an alternative to additional receptor assays is proposed where assays for proximal key events downstream of AHR activation could be used to enhance confidence in active calls. These case studies illustrate how the AOP framework can support an iterative process whereby in vitro toxicity testing and chemical structure can be combined to improve toxicity predictions. In vitro assays can inform the development of structural alerts linking chemical structure to toxicity. Consequently, structurally related chemical groups can facilitate identification of assays that would be informative for a specific MIE. Together, these activities form a virtuous cycle where the mechanistic basis for the in vitro results and the breadth of the structural alerts continually improve over time to better predict activity of chemicals for which limited toxicity data exist.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: R Medicine > RM Therapeutics. Pharmacology
Divisions: Pharmacy & Biomolecular Sciences
Publisher: Elsevier
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2018 11:43
Last Modified: 02 Mar 2022 09:45
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/9108

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